Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Manitoba Links Weekly: Speculative Fanfiction for Unnamed Carrot Mascot (ManLinkWeek 24)

Yo, ManLinkWeek, we in there. It's another jam-packed week, but let's get the absolute most important business out of the way first:

[cnib.ca: CNIB Manitoba is pleased to introduce the newest member of our family!]
Remember a couple of years back when the town of Melita put up a giant banana statue, and then everybody had the chance to try and name the banana? Well, this year we all have the chance to name a carrot.

The carrot is significantly smaller -- mascot-sized rather than statue-sized -- and does not come with its own professional wrestling championship belt, but what it lacks in unexplained wrestling paraphernalia it makes up for in pure early-'90s pizzazz:

Super-cool sunglasses? Spiky 'hair'? Gigantic frozen toothy nightmare grin? T-shirt and shorts paired with gigantic sneakers? Yes, yes, yes, and you're damn right. He can skateboard, right? What am I saying, of course he skateboards.

You might initially believe that I'm being negative or sarcastic with this evaluation, but no, you have no idea how much I actually and genuinely love mascot characters. Remember how much I love parades? Mascot-costume appearances play a big part in that, and I for one welcome our unnamed carrot overlord to the wide and strange pantheon of local branding-exercise creatures.

But, first, he needs a name, and that's where you the public come in. The contest runs until April 16th, you can submit as many entries as you or your kids can possibly come up with, and at the end you could win tickets to an eyesight conference or maybe some vegetables or something. Just get on it, all right? This is important.

Y'know what I want out of this? I want this mascot to debut in a series of fast-paced action sequences, following a day in his life as he runs around tracking terrorist activity and chasing a gang of criminal radishes and torturing captured enemy rhubarb for information. Well, maybe not that last one, this is supposed to be for kids, but you get the idea: I want a straight-up Jack Bauer pastiche in Daucus carota form, firmly establishing the mascot's character profile as -- wait for it -- a 24 carrot.

oh no, i'm not done, you get back here

The criminal radishes mentioned above are invariably caught at the end of every episode, yet are always back out on the streets again for the beginning of the next show. What's with that? This usually goes unexplained in most series, but not here! See, the criminal radishes' backstory is that they were all grown in tainted soil -- so every time they're caught and hauled into court, the judge presiding over their case is forced to take this upbringing into account during the sentencing. This is how the gang gets its name in the very first episode, and why their continual release is such a thorn in the protagonist's side: if there's one thing that a tough-on-crime crusader like The 24 Carrot hates more than anything else, it's having to deal with crime's... Root Causes.

And then Michael Bay directs the movie adaptation, and they're all aliens in it for some reason, and everything is ruined. Oh, well, it was a good run while it lasted.

I should, uh... I should probably have more links in this post, shouldn't I.

All right, give me a second, let me get the rest of this set up. There's no way I'm not coming back to this idea later on, but let's you and I get this post finished first.

[Slanted & Enchanted (Uptown Magazine): So, Folk Fest!]
The other big news of the week, of course, was the annual reveal of the upcoming Winnipeg Folk Festival lineup. I'll be watching very closely to see how the schedule shakes down; I doubt I can afford the entire weekend (and that's not some crack about the price hikes, because I couldn't afford the full weekend before, either), but as soon as I find out what day Charles Bradley will be playing I can start planning my entire summer around that one specific date.

If you aren't already listening to him, man, get on it:

A documentary about him premiered at the SXSW Film Festival a couple of weeks ago, and I'm kind of concerned that Movie Village will be dead and buried before the film can reach a home video format, so if I don't see Charles Bradley live when I get this one chance I am going to be inconsolably grouchy. Fair warning! Fair warning.

And speaking of fair warning, the onset of spring means once again that the threat of flooding will cast its dire shadow across our--

[Winnipeg Free Press: Spring runoff over on four rivers: province]
--oh. Well, never mind, then. As you were, everyone! As you were.

[The Manitoban: Campus pub about to open]
The article's subtitle on the main site is "We really mean it this time", to give you some idea of how long this has been delayed. Its much-anticipated reopening will be a welcome sight indeed, and I'm not just saying that because the site neighbours the UMFM studios.

The former Wise Guys was, to be honest, always a pretty lame joint; in the four years that I attended the U of M I only ever went in there three times, and if I -- whose love for beer and sports is well documented -- wasn't feelin' the place, you can imagine how disinclined other folks felt. So "The Hub" and its community-pub approach seem like a smart choice, and I'll be sure to check it out whenever it does eventually open. I'll let you know what it's like.

[Urban Compass (Metro Winnipeg): Take your kids downtown]
This is a good read and a sound concept, but with my characteristic honesty I must admit that my chief reason for featuring it is that his young son's last line of dialogue legit cracked me up. Kids say the darnedest things!

[KIRAHBOT: fire outside loblaw superstore. this is not a pun about hot deals.]
It's amazing the things people can become accustomed to, isn't it? Property being deliberately set on fire would probably seem like more of a surprise and a concern in other cities, because that just isn't something they're used to seeing. Here?

"'Looks like they're setting fire to Superstores now,' laughed a Superstore employee as I passed her.

Yes, looks like.

Yeah, yeah, side of the building's on fire, big plume of black smoke, no big. Yeah, yeah, six hundred arson cases in Winnipeg last year, up thirty per cent, whatever. Hey, do we need bananas? I'm pretty sure we're out of bananas. Man, what is with these lines today? Maybe if the self-checkout line is--no, no, look at that, that's pretty busy too. I don't know, them things never work right anyway. Wait, plastic bags are how much now? Geez Lou-ise! That's just silly. I get what they're doing, but man, come on now.

[Anybody Want A Peanut?: How to draw a parrot]
And, finally, here is how to draw a parrot. I, uh... I don't know how to expand on that description.

See you next week! If not sooner, of course.

1 comment:

RM said...

The mascot should be named "Larry the Carrot" of course, after the guy who speaks into one as a microphone.